In this Insanely Twisted, 2-D action-adventure game, explore unique environments and battle bizarre creatures.
User reviews: Very Positive (397 reviews)
Release Date: Apr 17, 2012

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Recommended By Curators

"A combination of beautiful art and great metroidvania style explorative gameplay with a smattering of unique puzzles. Highly recommended!"
Read the full review here.

Reviews

“... easily one of 2011's best games.”
95/100– GameCritics
“... a triumph in almost every way possible.”
10/10 – The Sixth Axis

About This Game

In this Insanely Twisted, 2-D action-adventure game, explore unique environments and battle bizarre creatures as you make your way toward the center of the mysterious Shadow Planet! Solve complex puzzles and upgrade your ship with alien technology as you fight to save your home world.

Key Features

  • Striking and appealing visual style by renowned artist
    Michel Gagné.
  • Innovative and intuitive puzzle design mixed with intense
    action sequences.
  • Unique and visually stunning creatures and environments.
  • Rich worlds and captivating back stories.
  • Explore the worlds of Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet with
    friends with multiplayer.

System Requirements

    • OS:Microsoft Windows XP/Vista/7
    • Processor:Intel Core Duo (1.25ghz) / AMD Athlon XP (1.8ghz)
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Graphics:GeForce FX series+ / Radeon 9500+
    • DirectX®:9.0
    • Hard Drive:2 GB HD space
Helpful customer reviews
9 of 9 people (100%) found this review helpful
6.0 hrs on record
Posted: January 31
Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet is notorious for two reasons. First and most obvious is absolutely glorious visual style by Michel Gagné; it’s dark, macabre, slightly frightening, but at the same time truly beautiful and not repulsing even by a tiny fraction despite all of the picturing of those tentacles and insect-like creatures. Second prominent feature is the protagonist. You see, despite all the variety of settings and worlds and stories a hero in metroidvania usually is a human, or at least some humanoid. But here you play as small flying saucer; so technically there’s still some humanoid inside. Obviously it impacts gameplay turning it into twin-stick shooter and omitting platforming with all it’s precision jumping and running. What it has instead is all different kinds of guns and devices that our UFO can use. Among them there are not only assorted lasers and blasters, but also a buzz-saw, a grappling claw, protective shield and so much more. So you fly around, shoot stuff and sometimes solve some puzzles. They’re neither challenging nor time consuming, but their presence is enough to transform what could be a blazing gun carnage into an exploration of beautiful yet twisted and insane world.
Speaking of which, there may be not a lot of variety on the first sight, but there surely is distinct difference on what kind of thrill you can expect from different game zones. There’s soothing calm of ice zone disturbed only by pesky and ubiquitous enemies; there’s tension of mandatory underwater level; and then there’s those enigmatic factory and all those different yet very familiar regions of the Shadow Planet. It’s not just bland similarity, but rather a true sense of interconnectivity that is the result of this distinct visual style of minimalistic mix of black shadows and pure-color backgrounds. This world doesn’t look or feel artificial, it’s as natural as a background for digital entertainment can get. It’s complete and interconnected; it feels solid, ready to be explored by a curious traveler, who’s on a mission to restore it, rather than just tear it apart.
And because of its small size and simple story the game forms an intimate bond with the player. It’s not a feeling of attachment but rather a sense of lasting mutual sympathy. If anything, Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet in a short few hours that you need to finish it accomplishes the task of teaching you a handful of interesting tricks while giving just enough time and space to toy with them to your amusement. Facing new challenge most of the time you either will know the solution right out or will figure it out faster than frustration kicks in. And that is not something easy to do, when an average gamer has an attention span shorter than one of a goldfish. Not that the game is a cakewalk from start to finish; there are bosses, you see. And they have all their bossy stuff: attack patterns, heavy attacks and weak points, that you’ll have to figure out to exploit them. So you’ll maybe even fail a few times while dealing with them.
Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet makes you feel invested without caring to present itself believable or even needing that for that matter. It’s a fiction that works on sheer kinetics and aesthetics; it doesn’t tell a story, it makes you perform it. The game simply unfolds with elegance and simplicity of a pop-up book and gives you the keys to the entrance.
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
6.0 hrs on record
Posted: October 29, 2014
I haven't enjoyed a dual stick game as much as this in a long time. Get it.

This is an exploration game, where you use a combination of skill and puzzle solving to get new tools and unlock new areas. Think Metroid Prime, but you're in a UFO, and it's 2D. You can scan objects to find out what can affect them and what they do, and use different tools in the same situations to get different effects.

It's a fun laid back casual game, but offers enough of a challenge for even the most seasoned of gamers.
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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
5.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 31, 2014
having just beat this game i have a few thoughts.

1. for you completionists out there, once you get to a certain point you will be UNABLE to return to earlier areas to gather missed items.

2. this game reminds me of metroid mixed with a touch of megaman in that you do a fair amount of backtracking mixed in with acquiring the bosses weapons 2/3 of the time.

overall, i reccomend it, but not for full price. it doesnt take long to beat.
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10 of 17 people (59%) found this review helpful
4.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 29, 2014
For an indie game, this must have taken a lot of work because it really shows. The graphics are pretty standard but the art direction and effects are what the game is all about. All of the environments are decorated with amazing pieces, from enemies to awesome looking glowing things coming out of the walls. The boss battles are well thought out and the level design is pretty good. The ship you control is very cool. The weapons and items that you get to help you through the game are all very well thought out and fun to use. The sound is fitting and the music is moody and atmospheric. You fly around above water and underwater and the transition is very smooth. Nothing feels generic, it feels like a lot of time and care went into making this exactly how they wanted it. Am having a ton of fun with it the whole time so far.

8/10
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
6.1 hrs on record
Posted: December 2, 2014
ITSP is a very concise game. It might not be long, but it's always moving; you're always getting new equipment and doing new things. You're always solving puzzles that are mechanically different from the last. It is nearly devoid of filler unless you actually want to get all of the concept art unlocks, and this is a path that I prefer developers take. I want short games that don't endlessly repeat over long ones that feel like a chore.

The puzzles aren't the most difficult out there, but they're imaginative and are very appealing in visuals/effects. The entire game, in fact, is one of the most visually appealing games I've ever played. The world itself is alive and squirming around you. The animation and kinematics are extremely smooth. The camera fluidly zooms in and out to frame the environment around you; for boss battles this means you are a very tiny ship in front of a monster taking up half of your screen. Areas have distinct color palettes with parallax backgrounds (also with animated squirmy things moving around in the distance), but the palettes are always limited in nature and most feature the distinct black silhouetted foreground that probably caught your eye to begin with.

I have a few dislikes about the game. The first is that it feels like it straddles the border between explicitly telling a story and leaving the story to the gameplay. It has these confusing cutscenes that don't really assemble into much of anything I care about. Honestly, I am fine if you just show me the planet/sun being corrupted by a dark force, allow me to infer that I need to stop it, and leave me be for the rest of the game; let the gameplay tell the story. This plot is not on the scale of Mass Effect or The Witcher where you'd need anything else explained in any other way.

Secondly, despite the quasi-storytelling, it doesn't properly build up to an ending; there is nearly nothing to suggest that you're nearing your ultimate goal of cleansing the planet and no real signifier that the last boss is... well, the last boss. Yes, it's really big, but so are the other bosses, it doesn't strike you as particularly end-guy'ish, so you beat it, pat yourself on the back, and then realize the game is over. For how fascinating the game was and how often it "ups itself" with something even more neat, I was hoping for an ending a bit more dramatic/climactic, something like an end-guy with a mind-exploding size that you have to beat in pieces at a time, or the throbbing core of the planet itself.

Despite a somewhat deflating end, ITSP is fascinating and entertaining. It's a game that makes you laugh because of how awesome its bits are, be those items you collected, the visuals of an environment you just entered, the very clever effects and how they integrate with the puzzles you are solving, or just how big everything around you is. It packs a lot into the several hours it takes to beat and makes them very worthwhile. If the main flaws above were fixed I feel like it could be one of my top favorite games - the potential is there but it got a bit muddled up - but the game as it turned out must settle for "just" being really good.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
19.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 1, 2014
This is a fun little 2D exploration puzzle shooter. It has a lot of simple elements that mix things up often enough to keep things interesting. Some times you'll be shooting bad guys, other times you'll be doing tricky tunnel navigation, other times you'll be mixing and matching tools to solve not-too-complex puzzles, and sometimes you'll even have boss fights. The game can be mildly frustrating on occasion, but it never feels unfair. Normally it means you're approaching a challenge in the wrong way, or lack a tool that will make it solvable or much easier. I wouldn't say it's worth it at full price, but it is worth checking out.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
33.3 hrs on record
Posted: April 6
10/10

Shadow cram it in your wishlist

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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
1.3 hrs on record
Posted: December 2, 2014
Truly a hidden gem among the plethora of titles listed on steam.

What hides behind the deceptively simple artstyle and gameplay lies an intricately designed masterpiece that has the power to evoke strong feelings of wonder and curiosity but at the same time, helplessness and terror.

I've still yet to finish the game but with the time I've played so far and what the trailer has shown, it is apparent that what I've experienced thus far is just a small slice of this exquisitely delicious pie that will only get tastier, the more I consume of it.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
7.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 12, 2014
Beautiful and amazing, simply and stunning, an awesome game you can never stop playing. 10/10
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
6.0 hrs on record
Posted: April 5
My favorite weapon was the laser.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
7.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 17, 2014
Nice little game with an art-style that reminds me of Samurai Jack.
Considering the short lenght of it, I'm glad I bought it in an Humble bundle.
I played with a controller and it's alright but for some parts (namely the 2-3 missile puzzles) I used the mouse.
The online part is dead and I managed to try it only because I create a game and played it with my brother.

All in all a little gem.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
10.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 28, 2014
Beautiful.

All aspects of the game seem well thought-out and polished.

Manages to marry modern graphics and animation with old school 2D gameplay style, which I found refreshing as most recent 2D indie games are riding the retro pixel graphics wave.

I liked how there's not a word of in-game text or speech, no tutorials, yet it manages to communicate everything it needs to.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
1.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 30, 2014
Absolutely beautiful. Fun to play with a friend.
8/10
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
6.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 31, 2014
Interesting puzzle game!!! Not hard and small but enjoyable experience.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
4.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 2, 2014
This was a very fun little twin-stick-shooter/2D adventure game. The puzzles were very fun, and the exploration of the really creative environments was wonderful. However, the comat was mediocre, some segments were unecessarily frustrating, and the bosses are just boring. Overall, though, the fantastic design, exploration and puzzles of the game are far more commonplace than any combat which is actually necessary, making this game a lot of fun.
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 28, 2014
I CAN THINK OF AT LEAST 4 THINGS WRONG WITH THIS TITLE
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2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
1.6 hrs on record
Posted: October 29, 2014
Reminds me a little bit of Limbo, not so fun, but still it's a great phisycs indie game! 9,5/10!
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
6.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 8, 2014
An exquisitely polished Metroidvania with a fantastic co-op mode.
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182 of 199 people (91%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
6.8 hrs on record
Posted: August 28, 2014
I got this game as part of a bundle and installed it on a whim.

There's something about the graphics, music, little videos, I dunno what, but I was so enthralled and immersed in this game that I completely forgot to go on a date with a girl.

An actual girl.

I could, tentatively, recommend this game over the prospect of meeting a member of the opposite sex.

Tentatively.
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45 of 50 people (90%) found this review helpful
3.5 hrs on record
Posted: December 5, 2013
Great exploration game. Fantastic art style! Developer just removed GFWL and transitioned the game to Steamworks! Yea! :)
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